The needle is the most important tool on your sewing machine. It does more than just stitch fabric together, it holds all the other pieces of your project together. You can make adjustments to fit your body or alter for fashion trends, and fix mistakes like missed stitches.
The needle is also one of the few items that will last longer than any clothing item you sew. That means it needs special care and attention if you want it to do its job well and last a long time.
If you’re having trouble sewing, it might be time to take a look at your needle.
There are several reasons why the needle could keep hitting the plate on your sewing machine.
Why does my sewing machine needle keep hitting the plate?
There are several reasons why the needle could keep hitting the plate on your sewing machine.
The needle might be not installed correctly
When the needle is not properly installed, it may hit the plate on your sewing machine. Check to see if the flat spot of the machine needle facing the back of the machine.
The needle could be bent or broken
The needle could also be bent or broken, causing it to hit the plate on your sewing machine. If the needle is hitting the plate on one side but not the other, then it is most likely bent. You might need to change your needle
The needle clamp screw could be loose
The needle clamp screw could also be loose which is causing the needle to hit the plate. Loosen the screw and tighten it back up using a screwdriver. This will usually fix the issue of your needle hitting the plate on your sewing machine.
The upper tension is too tight.
One of the reasons why the needle might keep hitting the plate on your sewing machine is that the upper tension is too tight. Try to properly set tension and see if it makes a difference.
Pressure on the fabric
The sewing machine needle keeps hitting the plate because there is too much pressure on the fabric.
If none of these possibilities sound like they apply to what’s happening with your machine, then something else may be wrong with it – such as an electrical problem – and this problem should be taken to a professional.
The fabric, thread, and needle are not machine
Sometimes, you may have just been using the wrong type of fabric, thread, and needle. There are different types of fabrics, threads, and needles for different types of sewing projects. If you’re not sure what to use for your project, then you might want to check the user manual.
Needle Plate Frequently Asked Questions
What is a needle plate?
The needle plate is a small, circular piece of metal that sits under the needle on your sewing machine. It’s usually made from metal or plastic.
In order to function correctly, the needle must be inserted into the hole at the top of the needle plate.
Some needles have a hole just below the eye called a ‘shank’. The shank is then threaded through an upper hole in your sewing machine’s arm and then tightened by a screw clamp onto a shaft – called a shank – which extends from below the top of the needle plate.
The other type of needle has no shank and is threaded straight through a lower hole in your sewing machine’s arm and tightened by a screw clamp onto a shaft – called a shank – which extends from below the top of the needle plate.
The shank, or shaft, must be attached to a flexible metal tube that attaches to a hook on your sewing machine’s main shaft. The hook grabs and moves along with the lower feed dog – another moving part – as it stitches fabric together.
What is the purpose of the needle plate?
The primary purpose of the needle plate is to hold the fabric in place while stitching. It provides a smooth surface for your fabric so that your stitches are even and accurate.
Why do my stitches come out uneven when I use my sewing machine?
One of the most common reasons for stitches coming out uneven is a damaged needle plate. Replacing a broken or cracked plate will solve the issue of uneven stitches.
How do I change my needle plate?
Changing your needle plate is a simple task and will not take too much time. To change your needle plate, you will need:
- -a screwdriver
- -a new needle plate
- -change area and surface to work on
- -new needle and fabric
Step 1: Disassemble the Needle Plate Clamp
- The first thing that you should do when changing your needle plate is take the existing clamp off. You will need a screwdriver or other small tool to do this.
- Loosen the screw on the top part of the clamp by turning it counterclockwise with your tool.
- Remove any screws attached to the side of the clamp.
- Next, loosen both screws in the bottom part of the clamp by turning them counterclockwise with your tool.
- Once the screws are loose, you should be able to slide the clamp off of the shank and needle plate.
- Attach the New Clamp Carefully place the new clamp over the needle plate and line up both screws on either side of it.
- Tighten both screws by turning them clockwise with your tool until the clamp is tight on the needle plate.
- Now that the new clamp is secure, you can re-assemble the machine’s arm to its original state.
- Reinstall Needle Plate Insert new needle into top of clamp and tighten clamp securely by turning it clockwise while holding needle in place.
- Once the needle clamp is tight, you can re-connect the flexible metal tube piece to the hook on your machine’s main shaft.
- Replace any screws in the side of the clamp that were removed earlier in this process.
Test Your Machine After changing your needle plate, be sure to test your machine to ensure that everything is operating correctly.
This way, you will know if your needle plate change was successful or not.
What is a needle hole?
The needle hole is the center hole on your sewing machine’s needle plate. The sewing machine needle must pass through this hole in order to function correctly, which will allow it to stitch fabric together.
Do I need to use my fingernails to remove the needle plate?
No, that is not necessary. Most sewing machines have a release lever at the back of the housing which will lock onto the needle plate while it’s being removed and replaced to make changing your needle plate easier.
What should I do if there is a burr on my sewing machine needle plate?
When the needle plate becomes worn, it may leave a burr on your sewing machine which will cause skipped stitches. If this is the case, you’ll need to replace the needle plate.
How do I know if there is a burr on my needle plate?
If you notice that your fabric isn’t being held down well during stitching, or that your stitches are coming out irregularly, it means you have a burr on the needle plate.
How do I remove a burr from my machine?
If you find that there is indeed a burr on the needle plate of your sewing machine, you can use some fine sandpaper to gently rub away the burr. You can also use a flathead screwdriver or your fingernails to remove it.
Why is my needle hitting the zipper foot?
When your needle hits the zipper foot, it can cause skipped stitches and needless frustration. Some common causes for this to occur are:
-Your needle plate is damaged
-The zipper foot is raised too high
-The presser foot was not attached correctly
-There’s a burr on the needle plate.
What is the best needle plate for my machine?
The best type of needle plate for your sewing machine will depend on the model and manufacturer. If you’re not sure which one to use, then you should check the user manual for your sewing machine, as it will give you the correct specifications for which type of needle plate to use.
Do I need a special needle plate for curved seams?
You can use any style of needle plate to sew a curve with no trouble. However, if you’re finding that your stitches don’t lie flat after doing a curve, you may need to switch out your needle plate for one that has a guide on it to help you maintain accurate measurements as you stitch.
How do I prevent my fabric from sticking to the needle plate?
To reduce the chance of your fabric getting stuck in between the needle plate and feed dogs, try using a stabilizer beneath your fabric.
This will prevent your fabric from bunching up and pulling down, which can lead to skipped stitches.
What is a needle plate cover?
A needle plate cover is a plastic sheet that you can attach to your sewing machine’s needle plate in order to protect it during storage or while moving the machine.
If you don’t have one already, it is a good idea to purchase one since needles can become stuck in the needle plate if they’re left exposed.
What is the best way to remove my needle plate cover?
The best way to remove your needle plate cover is careful, with two hands, supporting the fabric as you work. You’ll want to pull outwards on the corners of the cover while holding the fabric down so the needle doesn’t puncture through it.
How can I keep my stitch width consistent?
Check your sewing machine’s manual to see what settings are best for your model and type of stitching before winding a bobbin.
If you want a consistent stitch length, then try using some binder clips to hold your fabric in place as you stitch. This will prevent the fabric from moving, which will allow for a more even stitch width.
Do I need an edge guiding foot?
If you find that your stitches aren’t coming out even after following the proper needle plate and bobbin requirements, then it may be time to switch out your regular foot for an edge stitching foot.
This will help you maintain a consistent stitch width around the edge of your fabric.
How do I know if my sewing machine is set up correctly?
The best way to ensure that your machine has been set up properly is to test it on a scrap piece of fabric that’s the same weight as your regular sewing material.
If you’re having any trouble with the stitching, then there’s a good chance that something isn’t set up properly on your sewing machine.
What is the best needle plate for quilting?
If you plan to do any type of quilting, then it is best to use a Teflon or magnetic needle plate. This will help your machine glide over the quilt layers without getting stuck, which can cause skipped stitches or other damage to your sewing machine.
How should I store my sewing machine?
If you don’t have a stand for your sewing machine, then it is best to remove the needle plate before storing it away.
This will prevent it from getting stuck to your other accessories or coming into contact with any other items that could potentially scratch the needle plate.
How can I remove my needle plate?
If you’re having trouble removing your machine’s needle plate, then there are a few tricks you can try.
First, make sure your machine is turned off and that you’ve removed the power cord from the wall.
Then, try using a cotton swab dipped in machine oil to lubricate the area around where the needle plate meets the sewing machine.
Do I need a special bobbin for quilting?
If your current bobbin isn’t working out when quilting, then it is best to switch it out for a transparent or top-loading one.
This will help you see when the bobbin thread is starting to run low, allowing you to switch it out before any damage occurs.
What is the purpose of a free-arm machine?
A free-arm sewing machine can be used in reach areas that would otherwise be hard to get at when using a regular sewing machine.
For example, you can use the free arm to sew sleeves onto a shirt or attach buttons around the cuffs.
Is my sewing needle bent?
One way to tell if you have a bent sewing needle is by looking at the tip. If the tip is showing extra curves or bends, then it is probably bent. You can also try sewing with the wrong side of the fabric up.
If you notice that you’re not getting a clean stitch line, then this could suggest that your needle has become distorted.
To avoid using a bent needle, make sure that you always keep your needlepoint covered when it isn’t in use.